The Top 10 Online Payment & Billing Solutions for Media & Entertainment Companies

Xena Mensink

When you’re in the business of entertainment, entertaining the bills is nothing more than a hassle. You’ve got clients and projects that need your attention. You don’t have the time to dedicate hours spent on invoicing, accounting, and tracking all of the other expenses related to your business—fortunately, you don’t have to

Thanks to modern payment and billing solutions, your media and entertainment company can automate, streamline, and get back to the business of fun. There are solutions available that make invoicing easier than ever, automate your billing, and even give you the tools to manage every aspect of your accounting from anywhere—the only thing that’s missing is you.

If you’re considering this upgrade, you probably have a few ideas about what you want. However, do you know which of those options are actually possible? In the list below, we’ll take a look at the top billing softwares for media and entertainment brands, including both platforms you’ve heard of along with some that might be new to you. We’ll discuss all of their most valuable features, including the facets that are going to revolutionize your billing and accounting:

  • Automated workflows and streamlined billing
  • Custom invoicing
  • Quotes and estimate tools
  • Recurring billing and payments
  • Client and vendor data
  • Detailed reports and analytics
  • User-friendly dashboard
  • Mobile apps for convenient billing and payments on the go

The 10 best options

1. Intuit QuickBooks

Intuit QuickBooks is one of the most familiar tools for many people when it comes to billing and payment solutions. Today, the platform offers several iterations and has plenty of billing tools to keep your accounts organized. You can access the app from the cloud and there are even apps for iOS or Android users, in case you need to handle billing on the go. 

QuickBooks includes customization features and plenty of useful templates. It also offers tools to manage expenses, track billable hours, and even allows you to handle payroll, all in one place. There are also tons of integrations available, making it easy to incorporate QuickBooks with whatever you’re using. 

  • Free option? No, but there is a trial
  • Price: Starts at $15 per month
  • Receipt capture feature
  • Mobile tools available
  • Handle payroll and taxes
  • Hundreds of integrations

2. FreshBooks

FreshBooks takes a fresh look at invoicing, giving you plenty of automated tools and features that will make billing the least of your worries. Streamline everything and keep tabs on your accounting in all areas, including billing, payments, invoicing, payroll, and more. There's even a cool feature that lets you turn estimates into invoices with just a few clicks. 

FreshBooks has automated payments and reminders, scalability, and the unique double-entry accounting feature that makes it easier to track all kinds of expenses. You can even enjoy mileage tracking on the iOS app, and there’s an Android app available as well. 

  • Free option? No
  • Price: $15 per month to start
  • Dedicated mobile apps
  • Customer data collection
  • Fee-based payment gateway
  • Retainer option

3. Invoicely

Invoicely is one of the best free billing and payment solutions available; it can truly do wonders for all of your media billing needs. It offers tools to automate workflows, customize invoices, and even streamline your billing. Invoicely will send you reminders about recurring payments, payroll, and upcoming expenses. Plus, its mobile apps available on iOS or Android devices mean you can handle invoicing and payments on the go. 

You can integrate Invoicely with tons of apps and software that you’re already using, including several payment gateways. You can also custom brand all kinds of features and create your own user-friendly dashboard to keep tabs on everything with personalized labels.

  • Free option? Yes
  • Price: $10 per month to start
  • Invoice customization
  • Workflow automation tools
  • Recurring billing
  • Client information database
  • Plenty of free features for companies on a budget

4. Scoro

Scoro is changing the way that businesses handle billing. This extensive platform includes a customizable, user-friendly dashboard. Users can create quotes, send prepayment requests, generate or customize invoices, and even set up automated payments with reminders. 

You can choose to upgrade to branded invoices, store client information or project data in a single place, and track everything in real-time. Plus, you’ll be able to do it all from one place while handling billing, invoicing, payroll, and more. It’s also cloud-based and scalable for all kinds of billing needs, so you can use it during every stage of your business. 

  • Free option? No
  • Price: Starts at $26 per month
  • Real-time dashboard reporting
  • Automated reminders
  • Automated invoicing
  • Scalable and customizable
  • All-in-one billing management

5. Zoho Invoice

From the Zoho family, Zoho Invoice offers easy-to-use billing and payment solutions for all types of businesses when you want something simple that just gets the job done. There’s a free option for single users that comes with plenty of features to cover your basic needs, or you can upgrade to a paid plan to get access to additional users and upgraded features. There’s even a customer-facing portal to make payments a breeze. 

Multiple languages and currencies let you do business with media clients around the world. You can even convert estimates to invoices in minutes so that you can get paid in less time. There's also a feature to track unbilled hours and expenses that integrates with hundreds of different software applications. 

  • Free option? Free for a single user
  • Price: $9 per month to start
  • Automated payments and reminders
  • Recurring billing
  • Hundreds of integrations
  • Branding and customization
  • Multiple currencies and languages

6. Wave

Wave Accounting is an all-in-one solution that will take care of all your billing and payment needs. This platform includes tools to manage expenses, track income, handle billing and payments—it even automates certain accounting tasks, so you know longer have to deal with manually sending out payments on recurring days. The pay-as-you-go pricing makes Wave easy to use without having to commit to a long-term contract, but cost-saving monthly plans are still available for payroll and other needs as well.

Free invoices are offered to all users with limited features. Additionally, there are customizable payment solutions and invoices available for paid members. There's also an open API that makes it easy to integrate with all of the software that you’re using already, and the cloud-based deployment means you have all the storage space you could ever need. 

  • Free option? Some features are free
  • Price: $20 per month to start
  • Pay-per-use payment gateway
  • Free professional invoices
  • Automated payments
  • Recurring billing

7. Xero

Another total payment solution is Xero, which offers simple solutions to make media and entertainment billing a breeze. You will find handy project tracking tools and client databases, along with interactive quotes. You'll also be able to link your bank accounts for easy transfers and other types of common transactions. 

Additionally, Xero integrates with plenty of commonly used software and tools that you already use to make things that much simpler. You can also enjoy easily tracked expenses with Xero's simple features and user-friendly navigation. Xero also has mobile apps for iOS and Android, so you can take care of billing on the go with optimized storage available through a cloud-based system.

  • Free option? No, but a trial is available
  • Price: $11 per month to start
  • Custom invoices
  • Interactive quotes
  • Electronic bank syncing
  • Scalable
  • Recurring billing

8. Invoice2Go

Invoice2Go is all about making invoicing easy, no matter where you are. This platform includes native Android and iOS apps with total cross-device compatibility. There are no setup fees or contracts and plenty of convenient features to help you improve your accounting right away. You can create invoices in seconds, accept payments from anywhere, and even create email invoices with a handy “pay now” option for hassle-free billing. 

The Invoice2Go platform offers some of the most affordable invoicing and billing on the market today and includes a custom dashboard that you can set up just the way you like. Plus, the detailed reports help keep you informed on where your accounting stands and what payments you’re waiting on. For simplicity and affordability in billing, this app is one of the best options out there. 

  • Free option? No
  • Price: $3 per month to start
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Time tracking and billable hours
  • Lead generation tools
  • Invoice templates
  • Accept online payments easily

9. FreeAgent

FreeAgent is a great choice for billing and invoicing, offering a huge inventory of invoice templates that can be customized to your various business needs. The tool features a user-friendly dashboard and scalable platform that’s based in the cloud, so you have all the space you need while only paying for what you use. 

FreeAgent offers mobile apps for iOS or Android users, along with access for unlimited users, unlimited client contacts, and recurring invoicing tools. There are no setup costs or contracts, and the app includes a massive database of templates that you can customize to your exact needs. 

  • Free option? No, but there is a trial
  • Price: $12 per month to start
  • Integrates with hundreds of apps and software platforms
  • No contracts or setup fees
  • Invoice template database
  • Discounts on new memberships

10. OneUp

When you want more than just an invoicing tool, OneUp has everything that you need. This platform is reinventing the world of business banking with your own personal business assistant to help with cash flow, invoicing, taxes, quotes, and anything else that you need. You can pay bills, split payments, and there’s also an open API that makes integrations a breeze. 

OneUp makes it easy to create digital accounting entries, automate workflows, and schedule payments. You can also send billing reminders, which makes getting paid faster and easier than ever before. You’ll also find apps for iOS and Android so you can manage your billing from anywhere.

  • Free option? No
  • Price: $9 per month to start
  • Hundreds of integrations
  • Customizable invoices
  • User-friendly dashboard
  • Customer 360 views

Streamline your client communication with Smith.ai

Of course, streamlining your billing is about more than just getting paid—it's about strengthening your connection with your clients, so that billing and payments are just a part of the well-oiled machine that is your business. When you want to make improvements, we’ve got you covered. 

Improved client communication is integral to all parts of your business. The tools listed above can help make billing and payments much easier for your media organization, but what about your clients? Fortunately, most of these tools and apps offer perks for them, too. They’ll enjoy client-facing payment portals, easy-to-use email invoices, and interactive quotes are just a few of the many features that you can offer with your new software. 

However, you can always take it one step further for your clients when it comes to dedicated service, and the team at Smith.ai can help. We’ll work with you to handle overflow calls, take online messages, answer Facebook messages, and even make outbound calls to help with payment reminders or general inquiries. You have a business to run—why not leave the logistics to the people who specialize in them?

Schedule your Live Chat consultation today to learn more about how our virtual receptionists can add further automation to your billing and payments while also helping with other aspects of your business by acting as the face of your brand. You can also reach us at hello@smith.ai or (650) 727-6484. 

Xena Mensink

Xena Mensink is the owner of Fleur Noir Marketing, a full-service marketing agency that primarily caters to female business owners who want to step up their marketing game while taking a more human approach to engage with their audience. When she's not busy running her agency, Xena enjoys rock climbing, traveling to different cities to try out Instagram-worthy cuisine, and honing her photography skills.

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